Oakland Nature Preserve to host open house

ONP-Timucuan and Child
ONP-Timucuan and Child
  • West Orange Times & Observer
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ONP-Timucuan and Child


Oakland Nature Preserve Open House

WHEN: 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 28

WHERE: Oakland Nature Preserve, 747 Machete Trail, Oakland

INFORMATION: (407) 905-0054

OAKLAND — At Saturday’s open house at the Oakland Nature Preserve, visitors can learn how to weave palm fronds, try out a bow and arrow, find out about geocaching and get an update on Lake Apopka. The annual event takes place from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 28 and gives residents a chance to explore the grounds, learn the area’s history and see how far the preserve has come in its restoration efforts.

Free presentations will be made throughout the day, including Jim Peterson’s Lake Apopka update, an overview of the lake’s North Shore Project by Jim Thomas, Peggie Lantz’s talk on wild edible plants, palm-frond weaving with Pat Burkett and a flint knapping demonstration by Lori O’Neal. Representatives from the Central Florida Turtle and Tortoise Club, Florida Public Archaeology Network and Lake Louisa State Park will be on site, as well.

Kevin Gidusko, a Florida Public Archaeology Network expert, will give an educational talk from 10 to 11 a.m. about the Native Americans who once thrived in Central Florida. He will share information about the earliest settlers around Lake Apopka and how the Timucuan tribe of indigenous peoples lived and flourished in this area.

An introductory archery exhibit by NASP-certified instructor Bill Wilson and ONP Education Coordinator Maryann Krisovitch will take place from 9 to 10 a.m. and noon to 1 p.m. David Picciano will host a cross-country running course from 11 a.m. to noon during which he will teach proper trail-running techniques before taking participants out for a practice run. A GPS and Geocaching Basics class from 9 to 10 a.m. and 11 a.m. to noon will provide information on this technology-based scavenger hunt involving hiding and retrieving caches.

The band Lucky Mud will perform its Florida folk music, and hot food will be available for purchase.

In 1999, the Friends of Lake Apopka formed the Oakland Nature Preserve to restore and preserve an area adjacent to Lake Apopka to educate future generations on this area “as it was” before development. In cooperation with the town of Oakland, 130 acres of wetlands and uplands were secured and are being restored. 

Contact Amy Quesinberry Rhode at [email protected].


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